Kingdom of Lovely
fullName=Kingdom of Lovely
secondImageType=Coat of Arms
motto=Die dulci freure
englishMotto=Have a nice day
Banks & Wag
areaClaimed=None (see footnote)
membership=~58,165 (as of
December 1 2007)
1 January, 2005
leadership=King Danny I (Danny Wallace) 2005-
purpCurrency=IOU (Interdependent Occupational Unit)
# The land used by the block of flats has not been claimed by Lovely, so it remains the territory of the UK under international law.
# A National Holiday "(Lovely Day)" is celebrated on
2 September|The Kingdom of Lovely is a partly Internet-based micronationwhich claims as its territory a flat owned – and once lived in – by its creator and ruler, the comic writer Danny Wallace. As with many of Wallace's projects, the micronation was conceived with media in mind; in this case a television series, produced during 2004–05 for the BBCand called "How to Start Your Own Country". Lovely has 58,165 citizens registered on its [http://www.citizensrequired.com website] (since the television series, this figure is now static).
The official territory of Lovely is Wallace's flat in
London, at Bow Quarter, on Fairfield Road, but citizens of Lovely are invited to declare a room, or some other building or land belonging to them, to be an embassyfor the country by taking a photographdisplaying Lovely's flag there.
Lovely's flag, coat of arms and motto were designed by London-based design studio Pentagram. The pixellated coat of arms is intended to reflect the internet-based nature of the micronation, as did the studio's final flag, a pixellated
Union Flag. Wallace, however, preferred a different flag proposal, featuring a blue stripe and a red stripe at erratic angles on a white background – that is, the same colours as the Union Jack but positioned off-centre in an eccentric fashion. The Latinmotto is "Die dulci freure" ("sic" – the correct Latin is "fruere"), meaning "Have a nice day".
Currently the citizens of Lovely are in the process of choosing a new flag to be the citizens' flag whilst retaining the original as the Royal flag.
Wallace originally tried to start a nation by "invading"
Eel Pie Islandin London with the help of his friend Jon Bond, now Lovely's Minister of Defence. Bond was chosen for the role having once worked as a security guard at Tesco, making him the closest thing Wallace had to an army. However, the Metropolitan Police were contacted by local people, and Wallace was forced to call off the "invasion". After speaking to a number of people including the leaders of Sealand and Dennis Hope, who claims to own the moon, Wallace declared his flat to be a sovereign nation on 1 January 2005and he set about populating the micronation and recording the television series. Other notable interviewees included Noam Chomsky(who discussed democracy) and a prisoner condemned to death at a prison in United Stateswith whom Wallace discussed crime and punishment in an emotionally charged episode.
The national anthem video was recorded in late March 2005 in
Greenwich Park, with the help of some of the early citizens plus members of Join Me, a "collective" begun by the King some years earlier. The country remained nameless for several weeks after it declared itself independent, and thousands of suggestions for names were put forward online. Wallace chose his two favourites, "Home" and "Lovely", and let his citizens decide the winner by online vote. The country was officially named on 2 September 2005at an invitation-only gathering of citizens held in Leicester Square. This day is now an official holiday of Lovely called "Lovely Day".
During the broadcasting run of "How to Start Your Own Country", additional material was broadcast to
digital TVviewers after each episode. This took the style of a national broadcast named "Citizen TV". It was presented live by Danny Wallace and featured news, a special guest (usually a member of Wallace's government) and conversations with "citizens" who had called in. An early political change occurred when Wallace fired his first foreign minister live on air and appointed citizen Kieran Collins in his place.
Wallace attempted to submit a song of his own composition, "Stop The Mugging And Start The Hugging", as the Lovely entry to the
Eurovision Song Contest 2006. The contest's scrutineer, Svante Stockselius, met with Wallace and was sympathetic to his cause but informed him that Lovely could not enter the Contest as it has no national television or radio station of its own and therefore could not join the European Broadcasting Union(EBU). Wallace then submitted his song to the BBC(which is an EBU member which supports the UK entry to the contest), in an attempt to receive their backing — their judges, however, were unimpressed.
The series also showed Wallace's attempts to gain official recognition for Lovely at the
United Nations, which was established to be the true mark of statehood. These efforts were unsuccessful, largely because of Lovely's lack of independent territory; Wallace's own flat being within the UK.
As of 2007, Royal developments in the country appear to have stopped, with the King heavily engaged in other projects.
As of 2008, Danny Wallace no longer lives in the flat, but still owns it and rents it out to tenants. He believes the tenants are unaware of the flat's status, and has left a newspaper article about himself and Lovely – complete with photograph of him posing in front of the flat – on top of a cupboard, in the hope that someone will discover it.
The country's unit of currency is the "Interdependent Occupational Unit" (
IOU). The currency is based on the phrase "time is money" – IOUs are exchangeable for an amount of the recipient's time, e.g. paying a citizen for 5 minutes of washing up. Previously, each member of the micronation's official BBC messageboardreceived one tenth of an IOU for each post made, but since the move to the new forum this has been abandoned. No way to make use of the accumulated IOUs has yet been announced. This can be compared with local exchange trading schemes.
The Government of Lovely originally consisted of friends of Wallace who were recruited at a meeting held at a London pub (see [http://www.citizensrequired.com/unit/rtp_government/government.shtml here] ). One of these was "fired" and replaced by a citizen; other Royal appointments have been made, and the first open elections to specific posts were held via the official website. Subsequently there have been further elections – and disputes – on the official internet forum and other websites.
As of 2007 there are informal elections for a new
Prime Ministerevery six months, with elections held in the form of polls on the main messaging board used by the citizens.
The Lovely Football Association or LFA is a
Football Organisationset up in September 2005 for the micronation of Lovely. On 26 November 2005, the first league match was played in Bristolwhere Danvers Athletic beat Mangotsfield FC 5-0. The LFA had died but was revived on 13 January 2007 by the current President Kris Mantle.
16 January 2006, the first ever Lovely Grand Prix was held using Scalextricslot cars. The first race was won by Francisco Rodriguez.
The University of Lovely was the country's first officially recognised educational facility. It offers courses on being lovely and information on what education means to the nation. It was officially recognised in September 2005 by the King, and was created by Citizen Perfecthill. On the 30th of October the University of Status was also made available to those who had signed up.The UoL website is still available online, but no new courses have been written.
* [http://www.dannywallace.com/ Danny Wallace's website]
* [http://www.citizensrequired.com/ Lovely's official website]
* [http://www.lovelycountry.org/ Lovely Country (contains links to all Lovely-related sites)]
* [http://www.lovelycountry.net Lovely Country forums]
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